To stick with your bread example, say there's a certain recipe for bread that, from one perspective, is very simple: flower, water, salt, yeast. But, it also depends on having a working oven, a rolling pin, a flat surface, some sort of mixer, etc. And that's one component to the meal; the meal as a whole might have even more "external dependencies".
In contrast, microwave dinner has *one* external dependency: just the microwave.
I can see a fair argument for either being "simpler".
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